Showcase, High School Playoffs, College

by Softball Parent mom

My daughter injured her ACL her sophomore year(playing on her select team) in High School at a showcase in Beaumont, Texas she slide in to third full force, I guess she was thinking the bases were fly away there but, the impact immediately damaged her knee. We went through the surgery, physical therapy everything necessary for a full complete recovery.

My daughter is muscular, clean up hitter, and plays catcher, 3rd and first.My daughter stayed fit and even went to area- region for power lifting. Well her senior year she committed to a great D2 school Austin, Texas and we were surely past the ACL surgery 3 years ago.
Playoffs High School softball she overextend the knee trying to beat a throw at first and yes torn the ACL and some meniscus issues again!. Due to her strong thighs she was able to walk, I did not agree playing was a good idea. My daughters managed to wait after playoffs to have the surgery after playoffs. My daughter pleaded she was fine, I know it was her senior year and and her High School went three rounds close to state but,as a parent I knew she was not at a 100% but, I let her use her judgement.
The High School team lost but, she shared some heartfelt memories it would of broke her heart not to play. Now June 4, she has had the the revision surgery and on the road to recovery, she will be able to be back on the field Feb 2012.My daughter has spent all summer at doctor visits, physical therapy, and now the stitches underneath are surfacing so she is on antibiotics and we are hoping the stitches will surface so the wound does not have to be reopened. An ACL repair, is a long procedure to recovery and there is no guarantee that it won't tear again.Now she will continue her physical therapy with the college athletic trainers when she leaves this month and I worry about scar tissues, arthritis, and the welfare of her knee in college but, the coaches and athletic trainers reassured me of their experience.

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ACL surgery

by Marisol
(San Francisco)

I tore my ACL in March when I was training for my green belt in Taekwondo. When i kicked i fell on my butt and heard a pop on my knee, I thought it was nothing because I've heard my knee crack before but it wasn't that loud nor painful.

It took me awhile to stand up and my coach had to get ice, bandage and used one of the punching bag as a cushion to put my leg up. I was taking the Taekwondo class two times a week and club training three times a week. I wanted to test for my belt every semester so I can be a black belt by the time I graduate from college (I started Taekwondo when I was a sophomore in college).

The school's sports doctor suspected it was just a loose ACL but after a couple weeks it was still swollen and he thought it was torn ACL and asked me to get an x-ray and MRI. It was a torn ACL, I was scheduled for surgery in May.

Between March and May, I sat out in my Taekwondo and Aerobics class. But with my interest in Taekwondo and being stubborn, I was doing Taekwondo with a torn ACL and less swollen knee. I just didn't want to sit there and just watch people train.

My coach was worried but he saw my dedication and with my injured knee I was still improving as a Taekwondo artist. I still could kick higher and kick the paddle but sometimes when i scream while kicking it was louder because of the pain.
My coach gave me my green belt, though I felt like he felt bad for me I still thought I deserved it because someone was training for green belt also but I knew more than him because I've been training more. I know that might've sounded conceited but my coach commended me and he said "i respect you because 9 out of 10 people that got injured they do not even show up in practice but you did."

So in May, semester was over and I had surgery. The day i got the surgery I didn't feel anything because of the anesthesia, but the days after that i was in pain. I only took one or two pain relievers a day, I wasn't so big on the pain relievers because the pain either subsided or I was tolerating it. After 3 weeks I started my rehab, i wanted to start earlier but my insurance took a long time. After a month of surgery, I was off crutches and brace. my doctor did not want me to rely on the brace.

I did rehab for more than two months and i stopped because my insurance can not cover it anymore. First couple weeks of rehab was tough because I did not want to force my knee. My physical therapist asked me to tighten my quads but rather than doing that i end up tightening my butt. My quad was not reacting, it took a couple weeks to make that improvement. My exercises were stationary bike, balance on a half ball or trampoline sometimes with couple pounds of weights on each leg, stair climber machine, elliptical machine, going up and down the stepper, a little light kicking on the sides, light mountain climbing, and etc. I had bad balance even before surgery, So it was terrible for me. Then i get ice and sometimes my physical therapy puts this electrode thing on my leg so maybe my quads will look a little less flat. On my last day of rehab, My physical therapist asked me to balance on my good leg then my bad leg. She said i can balance better on my bad leg than the good leg.

August and September, No rehab and i want to go to rehab. I was thinking of just going to my school's gym but i'm scared because no one knows my case and i want someone to look out for me when i work out.

I had my surgery in May and i asked my doctor when i can get back to Taekwondo. He said January, I'm excited to go back but I'm scared. I'm scared that i might re-tear it. i want to compete, I want to kick harder and i want to be really good at taekwondo but I'm scared now because of my knee. And I read somewhere women tore their ACL more often than men. I don't know if its true but I'm pretty clumsy girl.

After more than 4 months with 2 months no rehab, my knee feels good it has that cracking sound once in awhile but it's normal. My quads are still flat, flabby and not in the same form as my good leg but it's improving. Sometimes going up and down the stairs is a little difficult because of the weak quads. I tried squatting like all the way down (my butt close to touching the ground) and it still hurts.

by the way, I had a cadaver graft. My doctor didn't ask me to choose. He picked that because he said it'll heal faster and he knows that I want to go back to taekwondo soon. I was scared about the cadaver graft because i was taking microbiology class that time and i was grossed out. But they assured me the cadaver's graft is clean and will not get me sick.

I think I'm doing great because my knee does not hurt a lot and if it does it's tolerable.

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Bike vs. Car = ACL, meniscus tear, knee contusions, and a lot of trouble.

by Karina

Ten days before I was supposed to study abroad in Sweden for summer, a car ran a stop sign and hit me on my bike. I immediately fell over, swinging my knee out and banging it completely in the ground as to avoid hitting any other part of me. I was in complete shock, and the pain really set in a few minutes later. People had to stop their cars and help me to the curb. My parents came and took me to the ER; X Rays were done as well as a CT scan, which only confirmed a loose piece of meniscus behind my knee cap.

Two weeks later, my MRI confirmed a completely torn ACL, torn lateral meniscus, and severely contused bones. I was referred for month and a half of physical therapy before I could have surgery. Still, two months after the accident, I couldn't walk due to the severe bone bruising. The meds for inflammation made me completely sick, and I literally spent all of that time in bed, sleeping. We lost a lot of money on studying abroad and I was extremely bummed out. The auto insurance company also informed us that the accident was my fault because I was biking on the wrong side of the road, and threatened to make sure our health insurance didn't cover my medical costs, which would probably range well over 20 grand.

On the day of the surgery, I was relieved that it had finally arrived. My surgeon used a cadaver graft and seemed confident I would be walking in no time. That night, my mom rushed me to the ER because I could not urinate and needed a catheter. It's too bad the entire unit was too focused on some gang shooting and in my opinion, the catheter was inserted for way too long, and caused me serious pain urinating and stomach cramps the next three days.

It has been five days since the surgery, and honestly, the pain has been excruciating. I was prescribed Percocet, which made me extremely sick. I took Vicodin but nothing helped with the pain and I haven't slept for more than two hours at a time these past five days. I saw my surgeon today and he told me I need to drop the crutches and start walking. Otherwise, it would be harder to get back into it. I can't even move my leg at this point without cringing. It especially hurts at the bump, where the plastic screw was attached to the tibia.

After everything that's happened with my failed study abroad plans, the auto insurance company, the scare that our health insurance would abandon us, the mixed blood tests that we were given five days before surgery, the lack of walking these past two months, and the pain that I am experiencing right now from recovery, I am feeling pretty discouraged, but am still trying to feel positive about a good recovery.

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Bethan's ACL Surgery

by Beth

Reallly wasn't as bad as i thought it would be. Im a 16 year old female football player and in febuary I completely ruptured my acl and badly bruised my bones whilst turning sharply during a match. Due to exams i had to wait untill july 5th for my operation and it went really well. The overall experience wasnt too nice, mainly due to the effect of the aneasthetic and just generall hospital thing (e.g. injections), but i had little knee pain. My hamstrings were quite sore and durring the night i had a horrible intense pain at the back of my ankle like someone was cutting me with a knife, but not enough for me to take the morpheine i was offered. Tommorow i am one month post op, and so far i am doing really well. I was walking without crutches by 6 days (not very well but still i did walk a tiny bit), at 2 weeks i could bend my leg 120 degrees which i am told is the 6 week marker. I now can walk almost normally without crutches (although i do have to bring one with me when shopping etc.) and i am able to go to the gym and do reasonable work outs ( i did 7k yesterday on the bike with a bit of resistance without much discomfort). Advice i would give for anyone about to have surgery would be:
- Work yourself up to think its gonna be the most painfull thing in the world.. way more painfull than actually tearing it, so when you do get out of hospital its not half as bad as you thought it would be
- ICE, i got a cryo cuff for after the operation and it is amazing, i pretty much was constantly iced for week 1 post op and it really does reduce pain and get you moving quicker
- Get some good painkillers.. and take them regularly, even if your not in pain for the first 2 weeks.
Good luck x

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I never want it to happen again!

by denise

Hello Everyone!

I hail all the way from Singapore and I thought it'd be good for me to share my ACL story! I'm Denise, 21 this year and I tore my ACL Last January. I had my surgery on May 26th

I have been playing competitive Touch Rugby for about 3 years when my injury happened. As usual, I would just dump the ball at a parallel direction to the touchdown line. Usually you'd just dump and split to the sides. While splitting, the opponent pushed me at the direction I was splitting. I had no idea the push was coming. I heard a 'POP' sound and I fell to the ground.

I studied sports science in school and the moment I experienced the pop sound, I knew it was something bad. My coach thought it was just a sprain and forced me to get on the field as it was really a crucial game for our school. I went back on the field but every time I tried to back up (run backwards), my knee would totally give way. It hurt so badly I had to come off the game.

Honestly, I didn't have any clue about ACL injuries. My parents had no idea what to do with my knee when I got home. My coach recommended me to visit a physiotherapist. I went and he did Lachman Test on me. He told me it was 95% ligament tear. I was really devastated. The physio then told me to go get a x-ray done and prolly go visit the doctor. He then gave me a knee brace and crutch to have better balance and support. I went to the ER and had a x-ray done. MRI can't be done as you need an appointment beforehand. x-ray did not show any signs of fracture or what not, so the doctor gave a preliminary diagnosis, which was prolly a tear.

I was referred to a sports doctor 2 weeks later. Doctor did the same test and told me it might be a ligament tear or meniscus tear. I was scheduled for a MRI 1 month later. I was told to go back and do a lot of icing to keep the swell down. And A LOT OF ELEVATING of the knee.

I soon went to get my MRI done. I was pretty lucky I got to get an early slot for MRI because the previous patient cancelled the appointment. Usually, in govt hospitals in Singapore, you will need to wait at least 2 months. I was really lucky to have waited less than a month.

After the MRI, and prolly 2 weeks later, I visited the doctor again and he told me it was just a sprain and bone bruising? Well, I was definitely relieved but still a little at doubt. I thought it was fine. I went for a couple more of physio sessions but I missed my follow up with the doctor.

After the swell has gone, and when my movement went back to normal. I went back for touch rugby trainings. First 2-3 trainings were fine. However, at the 4th training. My knee kept giving way. I stopped playing ever since. As I am a radiography student, I get to do clinical placements at the hospitals. Which means, long hours of standing. After 2 weeks of placements, my knee hurt pretty bad and I scheduled for doctor's appointment again. This time round, my previous doctor left to another hospital. The new sports doctor actually told me it might be a tear. Well, here's the issue. The doctor recommended me to go for the op. I told her to schedule me for an appointment with the surgeon. At the mean time, I would just go back to physio.

Went for surgeon's appointment and he looked at the MRI scan. He told me it was a 3rd degree sprain, meaning yes a full tear. I waited 2 months for my surgery but I did not go back to physio.

After my surgery, the surgeon told me not only I had a tear, but I also had a lateral meniscus tear. I wouldn't be surprised!

One thing for sure bout ACL surgeries is that, the rehab is the important phase. I would be lying if I said it doesn't take a lot of discipline!

I am at my 3rd month post surgery and my flexion's at 125 degrees? It is not ideal at all. There's been pain under my patella. Physio suggest that my patella tendon has been irritated? I've kinda learned my lesson and I've been doing my physio strengthening exercise almost every other day. I used to go for physio once a week, and on top of that post surgery patients are to do their own exercises too. Well, I regret not doing it but I hope it is not too late now!

Remember to regularly do cryotherapy, elevate and STRENGTHEN!

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